Lennie Tristano

Concert in Copenhagen [Video]

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This 1965 concert broadcast on Danish television not only represents a rare opportunity to enjoy Lennie Tristano playing solo piano, but it is one of his last recorded public appearances. Tristano was notoriously difficult to persuade to perform in later years, but he made a trip to Europe where he took part in a televised Berlin Piano Summit (as one of six featured all-star pianists) and came to Denmark the following day for this program. Tristano's dense altered chords in a deliberate "Darn That Dream" don't seem all that radical decades later, while his inventive reworking of the swing favorite "Lullaby of the Leaves" is a treat. The blind pianist is not one for a lot of theatrics, he simply turns and offers a slight smile to his enthusiastic audience after each selection. This vintage video is remarkably well preserved, photographed in black-and-white with excellent sound.